Tooth sensitivity — also known as dentin hypersensitivity — affects the tooth or exposed root surfaces. This occurs when the enamel that protects our teeth gets thinner, or when gum recession occurs, exposing the underlying surface, the dentin, thus, reducing the protection the enamel and gums provide to the tooth and root. Tooth sensitivity affects up to 57% of the population
Signs & Symptoms
If hot, cold, sweet or very acidic foods and drinks, or breathing in cold air, makes your teeth or a tooth sensitive or painful then you may have sensitive teeth. Tooth sensitivity can come and go over time.
There are many causes of tooth sensitivity, including:
- Worn tooth enamel from using a hard toothbrush or brushing too aggressively
- Tooth erosion due to highly acidic foods and beverages
- Tooth erosion due to bulimia or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
- Gum recession that leaves your root surface exposed